Suffering Loss is a Blessing

Today's people fear above all suffering losses, and they would rather let other people take on a burden than face it themselves. However, elderly Chinese people often try to persuade children and grandchildren that it's not a bad thing to suffer a loss. In the course of history, there have been many virtuous people who have required themselves to be able to endure losses, and they taught their children and grandchildren this way.

Suffering a loss, which is not easy for a person, requires one's magnanimity of being able to forbear. It includes being able to endure humiliation and adjust to adverse situations. In ancient times there was a Shangshu [an official rank in ancient times] named Lin Tuizhai who had both good fortune and virtue, with a house was full of children and grandchildren. Before he died, his descendent's knelt down in front of him and asked for instructions. Lin Tuizhai told them, "I don't have much to say. As long as you learn to be forbearing, that will be enough. Since ancient times, there have been lots of heroes who failed in many things only because they couldn't endure a loss! Since ancient times, there were also many heroes who have achieved many things only because they were able to endure the shame and suffering of loss! For example, Han Xin endured the shame of crawling under a thug's legs, but later he was able to become a great general and be conferred as Sanqi King by Liu Bang, while the youth in Huaiyin who insulted him earlier in life became his subordinate."

The ability of enduring loss was one of the standards of ancient people to distinguish heroes from villains. The scholar Wei Xi of the Qing dynasty said: "I don't have knowledge about what a gentleman is, but I just regard one who can suffer any loss as a gentleman. I don't have knowledge about what a villain is, but I just regard one who wants to always gain as a villain."

Since the ancient times, there was a saying that "Suffering loss is a blessing." The true meaning of suffering a loss is that it can turn bad karma into virtue. Things that an ordinary person gains in life are exchanged for virtue, and doing things that cause others to suffer will accrue karma and lose virtue. So from that point of view, suffering loss is indeed a blessing!

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